It is Christmas Eve, and I didn't go shopping, there isn't a tree inside the house, although the Christmas tree my mother sent us in 1994 is still growing well outside the home, there are no lights on it. The neighbors across the street and to the East and many others have decorations out and nicely lighted up.
In 1971, in the bunker in Vietnam, I wrote a letter to all my far away family and friends, and then sent President Nixon one of the same, since I knew his Christmas Eve couldn't be like mine - so I shared. I was surprised but in January I got a reply from the White House, with a mention of his service in WWII, away from home.
We will be going to church tomorrow, combined service, and I will hear that wonderful question 'What did you get for Christmas?' and my answer is a Savior that was more than I will ever be worth. Don't I like all the traditions? Yes, but not at the cost of my health or sanity, and most of them work best with children to enjoy, family and friends. Then I might, having done so in the past, spend time money and effort to make the season bright.
I guess if I have to make an excuse for not having a gift for my wife, I will have to tell her that I got "The Notebook" and I sat and watched it with her and enjoyed the story, the time and the message. She knows that I will give her almost anything she wants, except to change from cheap procrastinator.
I wish everyone a happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year, and I hope that you put your trust in God. How did that go, two people in the stable having a baby - no midwife? no emergency room? Only hanging on to the real certainty that angels had given each of them a message that matched their religious beliefs. Sent by Caesar Augustus to pay the tax... all the World. Somethings never change, luckily God loves us even if our governments don't.